It made me sad to read this verse this morning. The spies have returned from their reconnaissance mission and ten of them have spawned fear and rebellion in the hearts of the Israelites, causing them to refuse to go into the promised land of their destiny. What made me sad was to hear God’s hurt at our unbelief, despite His having been His loving and omnipotent self throughout the entirety of our life’s journey. I say “our” unbelief because there truly is nothing new under the sun in the human condition when we are determined to live our lives from an unbiblical frame of reference. I’ve been guilty of that more times than I can possibly count. I still struggle to not lapse into believing only what I can see rather than in the character of my Father – with Whom I have been hanging around with long enough to know better.
I am trying to practice a more robust, even belligerent faith, epitomized by the hard-headed refusal to trust only in what I can touch or see. Oswald Chambers referred to this when he defined the word tenacity – “The supreme effort of a man refusing to believe his hero is going to be conquered.” You see, my problem is that I am that fellow who God delivered out of my own brand of Egyptian bondage. I am that fellow who has seen God do remarkable, even miraculous (really) acts over a long period in the desert. Yet, despite having the overwhelming and conclusive evidence before me, every day is a new day and a new choice in deciding how I will respond to our evil enemy’s subtle, undermining query, “Will God really do for me, what He did for those guys in the Bible?”
Recently I spent a day mining God’s promises out of the Bible, typing them up and printing them out; regularly reminding Him of what He has spoken. I contemplate not just those folks on the pages of the Bible but also the biographies of men and women throughout history for whom God has shown up in similar fashion. I refuse to believe that God loved any of them more than me and it is this that feeds the furnace of an ever more belligerent faith. I don’t want my Father sad when He considers me and whether I am willing to step across the Jordan into the destiny He has waiting for me. Neither, we suspect, do you.
President & CEO
Salt and Light Leadership Training, Inc. (SALLT)